Open Thread: Blue Laws

It’s Friday night, and some of us are going to (safely) enjoy our weekend with a few drinks. But come Sunday when it’s time to watch some football – unless you thought ahead – you will be washing down your pizza with a coke instead of a beer. This article got me thinking: could/would/should Georgia repeal or stop enforcing blue laws?

Right now, Georgians can’t buy any type of alcohol in a convenience or grocery store on Sunday, but store owners are asking the state legislature to change that.

Georgia, Connecticut and Indiana are the only three states in the U.S. that don’t allow alcohol sales at convenience and grocery stores on Sunday.

Trade organizations that represent store owners said that 2007 is the year that they hope to change that law in the Georgia legislature.

They plan to ask the legislature to pass a law that would allow the sale of beer and wine, not liquor on Sunday like the majority of U.S. states already do.

Down here in smaller cities like Statesboro, the law is strictly enforced; last call on Saturday is midnight and ABSOLUTELY no alcohol can be served or purchased until Monday afternoon. Some of the fines and punishments are utterly outrageous. In Savannah I know it’s a bit more lax, but there is still no purchasing of booze on Sunday.

Now, I understand those are city and county laws, but could statewide legislation set a precedent?

I want to know if y’all think it’s possible, and why it is or is not a good thing. What do y’all think?

22 comments

  1. Bill Simon says:

    I don’t believe there is ANYTHING in the precept of being a true “conservative” that would justify a blue law. After all, true conservatives are not concerned with enacting laws that restrict the free will of the people.

    Of course, there are very few “true conservatives” elected in this state, so, I think the chance of repeal is highly unlikely.

    A so-called “social conservative” is actually an oxymoron since, again, a true conservative would not be concerned with legislating the personal choices of consenting adults.

    A “religious conservative” is ALSO an oxymoron because a true conservative would not be going around proposing and enacting laws that have nothing to do with a society founded on the premise of the pursuit of happiness under a constitutional republic.

    But, perhaps I digress from your original post, Adam… 🙂

  2. Chris says:

    I think if they put this on the ballot as a referendum it would pass with a greater margin than the ED or Gay Marriage amendments.

    I would be happy if they stripped it off the books at the state level and let the counties decide.

  3. Chris says:

    Oh, and let me say, nothing is more annoying that sitting around Sunday afternoon looking at recipies for what I want to cook for dinner and having to reject a large majority because I don’t have the right wine in the house.

  4. krobar says:

    First let me say that I am a Christian. I don’t drink. Why? Because I don’t like the taste of alcohol. It is a personal preference, not a religious conviction. I don’t like sales of cold liquor in convenience stores. Not because of some religious stand, but because I don’t see any reason to sell cold beer when you aren’t supposed to be drinking it until you get home anyway. To me, it makes as much sense as a drive-through serving on-the-go beverages that aren’t to be injested on-the-go. If a guy has to go to his own fridge for a cold one on Sunday, I have no problem with that for the rest of the week. I could care less about when or where he purchased it. My concern is in where he is drinking it. If someone else wants to drink, that isn’t my problem. When we have the ability to enact or dismiss laws that make it easier or harder to conveniently pick up a couple for the road, it becomes something to concern me.

    The whole idea of blue laws are based on a bad premise anyway. If drinking is a sin, it is just as much as sin on Monday as it is on Sunday. If not drinking or selling booze is the right thing to do on Sunday, Is it “less right” on other days? If you are going to be anti-booze for religious reasons, you should at least be consistantl about it no matter what day of the week it is. It just doesn’t make sense. Shouldn’t our laws be logical?

    But would I vote on lifting the ban? Probably not. At least on Sunday I know that the guy pulling out behind me at the QT doesn’t have a cell phone in one hand and the other wrapped around a fresh cold one.

  5. Erick says:

    It’d be a great way to increase tax revenue without raising taxes.

    Blue laws are outdated at the state level. Let the counties and municipalities make this call.

  6. atlantaman says:

    Bill-

    I enjoy what you have to say, as it’s always very thoughtful, but I just wonder what keeps you in the Republican party. You strike me as a Libertarian.

  7. stephaniemills21 says:

    Krobar,

    Your argument lacks thought. I can understand your own convictions, but the arguments you put forth make no sense what so ever. First, beer is sold cold everywhere! And why, because warm beer sucks. If you chill beer and then it gets warm it does not taste the same. The purpose of keeping it cold is to preserve its flavor, not for on the spot consumption. Secondly, by limiting sales of alcohol on sundays you are going to INCREASE the number of people who drink and drive on sundays. Simple, if you want a beer or wine, or whatever on sunday and you are out at home, you have to go to a bar or whatever to get it. If you could buy it in the store on Sunday then you would have less people out drinking and driving as they would be consuming it at home.

  8. StevePerkins says:

    I went to high school and college in the southwest part of the state. Although the Atlanta area at least allows alcohol to be sold in restaurants on Sundays, the rural parts of the state don’t even allow THAT.

    Since the rural part of Georgia has pretty much given up on Atlanta altogether from a cultural standpoint, why bother enforcing such laws at a statewide level? Let those of us in the metro area live like grown up adults who can make decisions for ourselves, and the rural crowd can try to create their 1920’s timewarp if they so choose at the county level.

  9. Tommy_a2b says:

    I agree with Bill on his very first sentance. Then I have some questions, in the 2nd sentance, “true conservatives are not concerned with enacting laws that restrict the free will of the people.” If according to Bill this statement was true then I would not classify these as true conservatives. I am not sure what I would classify them as maybe anarchist. Laws regulate the free will of people all the time. In a lot of cases these laws are good and a lot of times bad. Regulating free will is what laws do, so I humbly disagree.

    Going on a rant on wether or not “social conservatives” or “religious conservatives” are “true conservatives” is a waste of time. A true Conservative has balance they are neither social or fiscal only or mostly. They are Conservative across the board, no matter the issue.

  10. DougieFresh says:

    I do not understand Christians who think God orders them to not drink alcohol, and who think God orders them to tell other people they cannot drink alcohol.

    Wine is mentiones all throughout the bible, and it was the drink fo choice before microbiology was understood. Beverages like water and milk were unheard of because of health reasons.

    Just yesterday, I told a coworker, who is a stalwart baptist, that I bought my niece 2 bottles of Dom Perignon for her coming wedding to use as a toast at the reception. He was shocked that anyone would consider drinking anything at a reception (even a toast). He then went on how alcohol is a sin and how it should be ilegal.

    Then, he went on a 5 minute rant about how evil Catholics are because they drink and as he says “worship idols”. I found that particularly offensive. Things like this are what keep me strongly in favor of keeping religion as far from politics and government as possible. Blue laws are religion in government, and should be unconstitutional.

  11. Big Mack says:

    “Give unto them that are heavy of heart, wine and to those that are about to perish, strong drink. Let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more. ” Proverbs 31: 6 and 7

  12. gatormathis says:

    I get tired of Big Mack and his constant religous bantering.

    I bet he has a room in his home plastered with Sadie Fields and Ralph Reed pictures.

    And he thinks “Charlton Heston” was Moses’ stage name.

  13. Big Mack says:

    Gator,

    You know full well about my Sadie Fields and Ralph Reed pictures. If you will increase your last offer to buy them by 10%, I will throw in the negatives and you can have them all for yourself 24/7.

  14. Demonbeck says:

    I’m from Savannah, so take this with a grain of salt.

    Alcohol purchases should be allowed on Sundays and should not be limited to just beer and wine. Some of us are usually too busy on Saturday’s to run to the liquor store. Allowing them to be open on Sunday’s would be quite convenient.

  15. Bill Simon says:

    Atlantaman,

    I was a conservative Republican before this party got invaded by religious hypocrites claiming to be politically conservative, so, I presume they will one day go away and leave us alone.

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